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Singularity, muft either clean come to nothing, or become unnecessary.

Q. What doth Circumcision figuratively represent to us?

A. That as our Birth is impure by reason of Original Sin, so we ought to lay aside all Filthiness, Jami. 21: and Superfluity of Naughtiness, putting off the Body of ibe Sins of the Flesh, by the Circumcision of Christ, mortifying the Pleasures of the Body, which bewitch the Mind, and make us Captives to Sin and Death.

Q. What Rite of Admission into the Christian Church answereth to that of Circumcision under the Law?

A. The Sacrament of Baptism, called by St. Paul, Col ii. 11, the Circumcision of Christ, whereby the Children of 12. Christian Parents are made Members of Christ, and obliged to observethe LawsoftheGospel Institution; as the circumcised Infant, by that Rite, became a Debtor to observe the whole Law of Moses. By this Aas xv. 5. Means the Children of Believers are entered into Gal. V. 3. Covenant with God under the Gospel, as they were under the Law by Circumcision; and that Infants are capable of this fæderal Relation, is plainly declared by Moses; and since they are the Offspring Dent. of Adam, and consequently obnoxious to Death by his Fall, how can they be made Partakers of that Redemption which Christ hath purchased for the Children of God, if they do not enjoy the Advantage of that Method which is alone appointed by Cbrift for them to become Members of God's Kingdom? For Jesus himself hath assured us, Except Joh. jii. 5. one be born of Water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God. And therefore it was the constant Custom of the Primitive Church to administer Baptism to Infants for the Remission of Sins. And this Practice was esteemed, by the best Tradition, to be derived from the Apostles themselves.

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Q. Why

xxix. 11.

Q. Why was Jesus Christ circumcised, who was holy and witbout Sin?

A. That he might thereby be esteemed the Son of Abraham, and be the better qualified to do Good among his Countrymen the Fews, by bearing this Mark of Distinction which they so much valued, as to despise those that wanted it; and that he might fulfil the whole Law, and Thew that he came to bear the Punishment due to our Sins, and to expiate them with his Blood.

Q. What Name was given unto the Son of God when he was circumcised?

A. The imposing a Name being one of the Circumstances that attended Circumcision, even from the first Institution of it, as many think, our Lord was

then called 7cfus, according to the Direction of the Luke i. 31. Angel before he was conceived in the Womb: And the Mat. i. 21. Reason of it is given by the Angel, because he

should save his People from their Sins.

Q. What is implied in his saving us from our Sins?

A. That by his Death he should deliver us from the Punishment due to Sin, and reconcile us to God, and that by his Grace he should deliver us from the Power and Dominion of Sin, by enabling us to repent of it, and to mortify it.

Q. Is the Name of Jesus worthy of all Honour?

A. At the Name of Jesus every Knee shall bow. Gen. xli. The bowing of the Knee was counted a Testimony of

Reverence; and it was very honourable to exbibit such Marks of Respect, not only to such as were present, but to such as were absent, upon the mentioning of their Names. And it was the Custom of the World in several Religions, to express fome Kind of Reverence when that which they acknowledged for their God was named.

Q. Wbat hath the Church enjoined zehen we hear that holy Name mentioned in Time of Divine Service?

A. That

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A. That due and lowly Reverence shall be done Can. 18. by all Persons present, as hath been accustomed; testifying by these outward Ceremonies and Geftures, their inward Humility, Christian Refolur tion,and due Acknowledgment, that the Lord Jesus Christ, the true and eternal Son of God, is the onJy Saviour of the World.

Q. What may we learn from the Observation of this Festival ?

A. The Necessity of spiritual Circumcisión, or the Change of the Heart and Life, which our Lord hath made the Condition of Salvation; in order to which, the mortifying our corrupt Affections and sinful Lusts is necessary. It teaches us also great Humility of Soul, whereby we should be ready to facrifice our Reputation, rather than neglect our Duty; after our Saviour's Examplc, who, in order to fulfil the Will of God, took upon him not only the Form of a Servant, but the Appearance of a Sinner.

Q. Wbat is farther implied in Spiritual Circumcifion?

A. The retrenching our temporal Enjoyments, the weaning our Affections from the World, and placing them upon Heaven, and all those Things whereby we may obtain the Favour of God. It denotes a strict Government of our sensual Appetites, a totalAbftir nce from all forbiddenPleasures, and an utter Detestation of such sinful Satisfactions; and even when they are lawful, that they be not pursued with Eagerness and Excess: And it farther imports a Readiness of Mind to know our Duty, and what it is God requires from us, and a sincere Disposition to comply with and obey it.

Q. What fould the Beginning of the New Year fuggeft to us?

A. The

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of it?

A. The great Value of Time, which God hath given us for working out our Salvation ; upon the spending whereofdepends our Happiness or Misery to all Eternity; the

Consideration whereof should put us upon all those Methods whereby we may employ it to the best Advantage.

Q. What makes Time so very valuable, and wby ought we to have so great a Regard to the managing

A. Because there is so little of it at our Disposal ; what is past is Nipt from us; the future is uncertain; the present is all we can call our own, which is yet continually fleeting. And though the Season of Working is so very short and uncertain, yet we have an Affair of the greatest Consequence to secure, which requires the whole Force and Vigour of our Minds, the Labour and Industry of all our Days, not to be dispatched with any tolerable Comfort upon a sick Bed; nor in the Evening of our Lives, when our Strength and our Reason are departing from us. Besides, if we persist in an obftinate Neglect of all the repeated Tenders of God's Grace, the Things that belong to our Peace may be hid from our Eyes.

Q. How ought we to employ our Time, that it may be improved 10 the best Advantage?

A. Weought to redeem that which we have misa spent, by lamenting the Folli?'which have consumed so precious a Treasure, and by admiring that great Patience and Goodness of God, which spared us when we deserved Punishment. What we can reserve from the Necessities of Nature, and our worldly Affairs, which those Necessities engage us in, ought to be applied to the noblest Purposes, the Glory of God, the Good and Salvation of Men. Nay, even the Affairs of this Life may be sanctified, by considering ourselves as the Instruments of Providence, and by faithfully discharging the Duties of

our

our Station with a Regard to another World more
than this. And the best Method, in order to this
End, is to live by Rule; to assign to all our Ac-
tions their proper Season, and such a Portion of it
only as may be necessary for them; whereby Time
will never lie upon our Hands, nor sting us with
Regret when it is paft. Men of Estates and Parts
may lay hold on Futurity, by founding Hospitals
and Schools, for the Relief and Instruction of the
Poor. All Christians may dedicate their whole
Lives to God's-Service in the Days of their Youth;
and may make such public Declaration in Behalf
of Religion, that they may put themselves under a
Necessity of living virtuously, by cutting off any
Retreat to Vanity and Folly.

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Mortifi. cation.

The PRAY E R S.

I.
LMIGHTY God, who madest thy Blessed For true

Son to be circumcised, and obedient to the
Law of Man; grant me the true Circumcision of
the Spirit, that, my Heart and all my Members
being mortified from all worldly and carnal Lusts,
I may in all Things obey thy blessed Will, through
the same thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

II.
BLESSED Jefus! who by the Purity of For Delia

thy Life,and the meritorious Sufferings of thy from che Death, hast purchased for us an eternal Inheritance; Power of deliver me by the Power of thy Grace from the Sin. greatest Evil, my Sins; and reform and reduce

my Heart to the Obedience of thy Laws.

Make me carefully to avoid all those Occasions that have forTerly betrayed me to Folly, all those Practices that heighten my corrupt Inclinations and Passions, and

alicnate

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